So does “risk” explain or justify non-labour income? No, anarchists argue. This is for five reasons. Firstly, the returns on property income are utterly independent on the amount of risk involved. Secondly, all human acts involve risk of some kind and so why should property owners gain exclusively from it? Thirdly, risk as such it not rewarded, only successful risks are and what constitutes success is dependent on production, i.e. exploiting labour. Fourthly, most “risk” related non-labour income today plays no part in aiding production and, indeed, is simply not that risky due to state intervention. Fifthly, risk in this context is not independent of owning capital and, consequently, the arguments against “waiting” and innovation apply equally to this rationale. In other words, “risk” is simply yet another excuse to reward the rich for being wealthy.
When a workman leaves the mill, carrying his pay in his pocket, the civil law guarantees to him what he thus takes away; but before he leaves the mill he is the rightful owner of a part of the wealth that the day’s industry has brought forth. Does the economic law which, in some way that he does not understand, determines what his pay shall be, make it to correspond with the amount of his portion of the day’s product, or does it force him to leave some of his rightful share behind him? A plan of living that should force men to leave in their employer’s hands anything that by right of creation is theirs, would be an institutional robbery - a legally established violation of the principle on which property is supposed to rest.